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Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

Explorer | Level 4

Today when I tried to open Word files from my Dropbox app on my work desktop, I received notice after notice saying, "Word was unable to read this document. It may be corrupt." However, I can open these files in the Dropbox app on my iPad with no lost information, and in some cases I was working with them on a different desktop just last night. I doubt they can all have become corrupt in the last 24 hours. Looking through my Dropbox app on the problem desktop, it appears that files in folders are the problem; files that are simply in my regular Dropbox have no problem, even if they are the exact same age as files in folders. My desktop app is also not syncing when I upload files to Dropbox from my iPad, although I can see them in my Dropbox online.

Is there a way to fix this issue? Do I just need to uninstall the Dropbox app on my work desktop and reinstall it? It is a Dell computer using Windows 7.

28 Replies 28
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Re: Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
Hey @Leonie2, thanks a lot for the detailed description, it was really helpful!
 
A quick search on my end for the error message you received in regards to your corrupted files Leonie yielded some results that have to do with the Word version you’re using. Have you been able to check back on the relevant troubleshooting on the Microsoft Forums by any chance? 
 

My desktop app is also not syncing when I upload files to Dropbox from my iPad, although I can see them in my Dropbox online.

Is there a way to fix this issue? Do I just need to uninstall the Dropbox app on my work desktop and reinstall it? It is a Dell computer using Windows 7.

Following, as you've mentioned that your files are syncing as expected from your iPad to your account online  ➡️ 🕸️, then it appears that the issue you’re facing could be related to specific filenames, as one or more of your files may contain an incompatible character in their name or path. Certain characters can be used on some operating systems, but not others.
 
Your files are on the Dropbox website, they just can't be sent to a computer that can't handle them & you can use Dropbox's "Bad Files Check" webpage to determine which files are not syncing due to incompatibilities & in most cases you should be able to resolve the incompatibility by simply renaming the file and omitting the illegal characters. (Extra tip: Here’s a list of known incompatibilities and illegal characters). 
 
If this persists (or you didn’t locate any incompatible characters on our tool), then unlinking & relinking your account on your desktop would be a great starting point, as it recreates the local database
 
Hopefully this points you towards the right direction & please do let me know my advice works for you or in case you need further assistance in any way. Enjoy the rest of your day until we talk again! 

 


Jane
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support

 

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Re: Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

Explorer | Level 4

Hi Jane,

Thanks for the fast and detailed reply! I really don't think it's Word that's the problem. I was able to open other Word files with the program just fine, even other Word files in Dropbox. 

I also don't think incompatible characters are causing a problem. I used regular alphabetical characters for the names of all but one of the files that were supposedly "corrupted," and the one exception only had a 2 in it. I can also open the supposedly corrupted files fine with the Dropbox app on my home desktop, which I'm using now.

I'll try unlinking and linking the app again when I go into work again tomorrow. Thank you for the suggestion.

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Re: Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
Thanks for circling back to me @Leonie2! Please keep me posted on the results! 

 


Jane
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support

 

Heart Did this post help you? If so please give it a Like below. 
 Did this post fix your issue/answer your question? If so please press the 'Accept as Best Answer' button to help others find it.
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Re: Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

Explorer | Level 4

Unfortunately, I tried uninstalling and reinstalling Dropbox, and I'm still having the same problem. Files that I can open just fine on other devices and in fact download from the Dropbox website are corrupt if opened from the Dropbox app, according to Microsoft Word on this desktop. Files opened from other locations are not. At this point, I don't know what else to do. 

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Re: Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
Thanks for letting me know of the progress @Leonie2. To further investigate, I’ve sent you a brief message on the email connected to your Forum profile. You may have a look at your inbox at your earliest convenience & we’ll take it from there. I'm looking forward to heaing back from you!

 


Jane
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support

 

Heart Did this post help you? If so please give it a Like below. 
 Did this post fix your issue/answer your question? If so please press the 'Accept as Best Answer' button to help others find it.
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Questions asked in the community will likely receive an answer within 4 hours!)

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Re: Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

New member | Level 2
New member | Level 2

We have a Dropbox business account and are expereincing the same issue with just one computer. Files open from the Desktop but not the Dropbox folder. Everyone else on the team can open same Word file in the Dropbox folder. Word was unable to read this document. it may be corrupt..." error persists.

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Re: Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
Thanks for checking in with us here (@laberday), have you tried unlinking & relinking by any chance & see if that does the trick? Also, would you mind posting us a screenshot (omitting personal info) of what the error message reads on your end in your next post here, so as to get a better idea of what’s happening?
 
Once I have this info, I’ll try to address your initial inquiry in a bit more depth. Have a wonderful day ahead until we talk again! 

 


Jane
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support

 

Heart Did this post help you? If so please give it a Like below. 
 Did this post fix your issue/answer your question? If so please press the 'Accept as Best Answer' button to help others find it.
 Still stuck? Ask me a question! (
Questions asked in the community will likely receive an answer within 4 hours!)

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Re: Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

New member | Level 2
New member | Level 2

I am having the same issue.

Highlighted

Re: Desktop saying Dropbox files are corrupted, but they open on other devices

New member | Level 2
New member | Level 2

Not sure if this helps but I have Dropbox set not to start at Startup, I want to start it when I am ready.  I was getting this error until I went and asked Dropbox to start and now the files are opening?

 

Cheers.

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